Netflix’s latest comic book adaptation, Locke & Key, landed on the streamer on 7th February 2020 – and now its original creators have given their thoughts on the series.
The fantasy drama follows siblings Tyler, Kinsey and Bode Locke as they move into their ancestral home following their father’s murder. There, they encounter mysterious keys that give them magical abilities, and awaken a demon from a different dimension.
Speaking in an interview with EW, writer Joe Hill and artist Gabriel Rodriguez discussed the changes that were made to the source material during its transition to the screen, and why they were necessary.
“It has to work as a TV show. It has to succeed in the possibilities and limitations of its own particular form,” Hill said. “When we worked on the comic, we were always eager to make it successful as a comic, and there were things we could do that you couldn’t do in any other form.
“It was the job of Carlton [Cuse], Meredith [Averill], the cast, and the production team to make something that would succeed on its own terms as a TV show. My argument that they succeeded is it is basically like TV crack, it’s hard to stop watching once you’re into it.”
The series definitely feels a lot more family-friendly than the comics, and Hill went on to acknowledge the tonal difference between the two: “The comic is a horror comic in a lot of ways. The TV show is a work of dark fantasy that comments on horror.”
One of the biggest changes, however, is in the keys themselves. The head key has the power to unlock the contents of someone’s head, which in the comic is depicted as the characters’ heads literally cracking open. In the series, however, the head key instead creates doors that the characters have to pass through to access their memories.
The gender and race keys are also merged into the identity key.
“In the show, they understood that what they had to be faithful to was the idea behind the keys, not the mechanics of how they work,” Rodriguez explained;
Dodge, the demon after the magic keys, also spends a lot more time in her female form than she does in the comics, where she mostly takes the form of Lucas Caravaggio and Zack Wells. Wells is a no-show in the series, but the first season’s ending revealed that Gabe was essentially the same character when he used the identity key to turn into Dodge.
Locke & Key season one is streaming now on Netflix